Today, the Commission launched the ‘European Research Area for Ukraine’ (ERA4Ukraine) portal, a one-stop-shop for information and support services to Ukraine-based researchers and researchers fleeing Ukraine. The portal brings together initiatives at the EU level, per country and from non-governmental groups. It aims to help affected researchers find housing and job opportunities, facilitate the recognition of their diplomas, and offer other services.
The ERA4Ukraine portal is launched on the existing EURAXESS network, which supports researchers by connecting more than 600 centres and 43 national portals across the EU Member States and countries associated to Horizon Europe. All information will soon be available in both English and Ukrainian. Each Member State and associated country has a national portal on which support services are listed in a structured way. So far, 30 country portals are available.
Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said: “We stand with the researchers and innovators of Ukraine who are faced with unprecedented circumstances as a result of the Russian invasion against their country. Ukrainian scientists and researchers have been key contributors to EU research and innovation. Pending the ratification of Ukraine’s association to Horizon Europe, we have made sure successful beneficiaries can already receive funding from the EU R&I programmes. Today’s launch of ERA4Ukraine is another important action to support our Ukrainian peers.”
In the same vein, already last week, Maria Leptin, the President of the European Research Council (ERC) has asked all 5600 ERC grantees to provide temporary employment to refugee researchers and support staff from Ukraine. This new ERC initiative is included in the ERA4Ukraine portal. So far, within just a couple of days, 380 offers have been received. A press release has been published here.
Other EU initiatives include access to Science4Refugees, an existing EURAXESS initiative that provides internships, part-time and full-time jobs to refugees, as well as access to a European Research Community, EU solidarity with Ukraine and MSCA – Researchers at risk.
The ERA4Ukraine portal also links to #Science4Ukraine, a community group of volunteer students and research scientists from academic institutions in Europe and around the world. The volunteers collect and disseminate information about support opportunities at the university, national, and international levels for graduate students and researchers directly affiliated to a Ukraine academic institution.
The Russian military aggression against Ukraine has created the largest humanitarian crisis Europe has seen in decades. The European Commission and Member States are working on all fronts to support Ukraine with humanitarian aid and civil protection. At the same time the Commission has taken several steps to provide support in the field of research and innovation.
In October 2021, Ukraine signed its agreement to associate both to the Horizon Europe and Euratom Research and Training Programmes. It is not yet in force due to delays in the ratification process on the Ukrainian side, which has now been halted. In the meantime, the Commission has taken administrative steps to ensure that successful Ukrainian beneficiaries can receive funding from the EU R&I programmes.
On 3 March, Commissioner Gabriel announced that the European Commission will not engage into further cooperation projects with Russian entities. It has suspended the preparations of grant agreements of projects under the Horizon Europe programme that involve Russian research organisations. Signing of new contracts has been put on hold until further notice. Additionally, payments to Russian entities under existing contracts have been suspended until further notice.
ERA4Ukraine is hosted on EURAXESS, a unique pan-European initiative delivering information and support services to professional researchers. Backed by the European Union, Member States and associated countries, it supports researcher mobility and career development, while at the same time enhancing scientific collaboration between Europe and the world. EURAXESS is a network of more than 600 centres and 43 national portals across EU Member States and associated countries. Switzerland and the UK also have national administrators in place.